One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
(of a person) excessively orderly and fussy (supposedly owing to conflict over toilet-training in infancy).
- ‘The mechanics at Hawk are very good at getting them absolutely immaculate, just the way I like them because they are the kind of anal-retentive people like me who like to get the bike so it's clean enough to eat your dinner off.’
- ‘And here's the proof: a glorious four-CD retrospective that gathers album tracks, B-sides and rarities for fans and anal-retentive obsessives alike - and it's a joy.’
- ‘He knew from experience not to try to force others into the same anal-retentive habits he had.’
- ‘A sleeper hit in Britain, Leaves has managed to bring both professional editors and amateur anal-retentive sticklers out of the closet to exalt the splendor of semicolons, the cunning of commas, the debonair of the dash.’
- ‘You've gotta be a micromanaging, anal-retentive control freak.’
nounalso anal retentive
A person who is excessively orderly and fussy.
- ‘The lyrics are at once sensitive, dramatic, and tragic, but so entertaining that even the anal-retentive could lose themselves in the sheer buzz of it all.’
- ‘Now there's an anal-retentive if I ever saw one.’
- ‘The stuff you buy is the old pure beer, brewed and fermented by anal-retentives from ancient recipes.’
- ‘But, once again, we're just being anal-retentives so don't mind us.’
- ‘The last couple of weeks have seen my routine disrupted, which is traumatic for us anal-retentives.’
- ‘His anal retentiveness - he must, must, MUST wipe the seat every time he sits down at their local coffee house - and perfect timing makes him one of the most endearing characters in television history.’
- ‘I can't even begin to think of anything to say about this, but thought I would offer it up to the greater glory of anal retentiveness in all its myriad and glorious forms.’
- ‘Her short and sweet set consisted of three numbers: three funny, neurotic anecdotes about cats, anal retentiveness and the apocalypse.’
- ‘Indeed, I would like to see a Freudian interpretation of social values related to constipation that particularly explores anal retentiveness and the use of dilators, vibrators and colonic irrigation as methods of prevention and cure.’
- ‘‘Not to stereotype accountants, but it's good to have that anal retentiveness in the way that we look at stocks,’ says Fort.’
Top tips for CV writingRead more
In this article we explore how to impress employers with a spot-on CV.